A Different 9/11 »

For AVweb editor Glenn Pew, five years of building and many more years of scheming to complete his one-of-a-kind, (almost) 200-mph, 3000-fpm, fully aerobatic kitplane would prove its worth in one day -- first flight. Unfortunately, some things don't work out the way you hope. More

Flight Data System's Air-Data Fuel Performance Computer »

In a quest to bring some glass-cockpit technology to their homebuilt, a couple of guys created an air-data computer with a very simple interface, small size, and low price, but with all the necessary features. Mike Corder, like many pilots they met, wanted one for himself and brings us this review. More

Wooden It Be Lovely? — Part Five: Details, Details »

In this installment of his series documenting construction of a Pietenpol homebuilt, AVweb's Matt Paxton discusses things big and small -- attaching the empennage, control sticks, and instrument panel. Now in the fourth year of construction, Matt has some expected and unexpected hurdles to overcome. More

Experimental Aircraft Rentals »

The face of flight training is changing, at least in some circles. A relatively recent and little-known EAA exemption is allowing the owners of experimental aircraft to rent their flying machines legally for the first time. A few intrepid flight instructors have taken up the challenge and are expanding their list of services to include flight training in these unique machines. Jamie Beckett relates the story of one of the pioneers who is renting an experimental airplane for fun and profit. More

Sun 'N Fun's Winter RV Fly-In »

As the mercury languishes below freezing, the approaching air show season may seem a long ways away in some locales but not in Lakeland, Florida. Down at Sun 'n Fun, they kicked off the year with an RV Fly-In that may become an annual event. Jamie Beckett was there and shares his observations (and photos) with us. More

Wooden It Be Lovely? — Part Four: Fashioning the Fuselage »

After a brief hiatus, AVweb's Matt Paxton is back to work on his Pietenpol homebuilding project. In earlier segments, Matt discussed kicking the project off, building the wings, and searching for new ideas at a type fly-in. This time around, he's assembling the fuselage. At the end of the day, he finally has a place to sit. More

Interiors, Legalities, and Part 91 Aircraft »

AVweb reader Greg Amy refurbished the interior of his Grumman Tiger with automotive cloth and vinyl materials, but subsequently became concerned about whether those materials were legal for use in his aircraft. His research led him through a veritable morass of conflicting and contradictory guidance from FARs, Advisory Circulars, FAA-Designated Engineering Representatives, FAA-approved testing labs, and a National Resource Specialist from FAA Headquarters. Greg's ordeal in trying to get a straight answer to a simple certification question helps explain both why the FAA employs so many lawyers, and why so many pilots are drawn to homebuilt aircraft. More

Wooden It Be Lovely? — Part Three: The Brodhead Brotherhood »

Anyone working on a kit-built aircraft would be well advised to reach out to others who have been through the process, check out their solutions to vexing problems and build a support network. So it was earlier this year when AVweb's Matt Paxton who's building his very own Pietenpol Air camper made the pilgrimage to Brodhead, Wis., for the annual Brodhead Pietenpol Fly-in. More

Wooden It Be Lovely? — Part Two: Building the Wings »

Few of us have the courage, attention span, or time to build a kitplane, much less a plans-build aircraft from scratch. But AVweb's Matt Paxton does, and he continues his saga of building a classic Pietenpol Air Camper. In Part Two, Matt takes us through the joys and agonies of constructing the most critical part of any airplane: the wings. What's it like to start with a stack of aircraft-grade spruce and some blueprints, and wind up with 32 bent-and-glued ribs, spars, struts, leading and trailing edges, all jigged and mated and trammeled into a wing that flies straight and true? Well, for one thing, plan on it taking 15 months ... More